The idea of the evil twin has been done to death, but not often has it been done in quite the same way as Metal Gear Solid. Liquid Snake, born through laboratory experimentation like his brother Solid Snake, bears a very close resemblance to his protagonist sibling. The only real differences are his coloration and his voice, making him something of an Aryan Mutant Ninja Terrorist. He is also a very bitter, bitter man.
Why is he so cranked? As it turns out, he has an inferiority complex. Led to believe that the Les Enfants Terribles project left him with Big Boss’s recessive genetics while Solid Snake got the dominant end of the stick, he’d like nothing more than to best his brother and prove who Big Boss’s superior progeny really is. And also hijack a Metal Gear and a base filled with genetically enhanced soldiers while he’s at it.
Although Liquid tries to take Snake out with a Hind D helicopter, it doesn’t work out in his favor. So of course, at the end of the game, he ups the ante by confronting his brother with Metal Gear REX, which, despite the cramped quarters of the hanger, has an array of weapons in its arsenal more than fit for the task. He’s got things covered.
Well, aside from the fact that REX’s otaku designer intentionally gave it a weakness straight out of the Cobra Commander playbook. When Snake takes out the dish mounted on its shoulder, Liquid is forced to fight with the cockpit open. And when your opponent has access to weapons such as grenades and a rocket launcher, that’s not typically considered a good thing.
REX, of course, goes down, but in the chaos that follows, Liquid regains the upper hand and pulls an unconscious Snake on top of the wreckage. After yet another monologue (Liquid so does love to talk), he and Snake go at it one more time, man to man, fist to fist. But in this exchange of powerful punches and roundhouse kicks, Liquid once again gets his ass handed to him and falls from the top of REX.
Now that Liquid is surely defeated, Snake and either Meryl (if Snake was manly under the threat of torture) or Otacon (if Snake’s manliness is less than adequate) make their way to a jeep and begin their escape from the facility, which is under threat of a direct nuclear strike. But wait. Surprise! Liquid’s back, and he’s pissed off. He pursues Snake through the tunnels in a jeep of his own and tries one again to finish his brother. Snake, however, fends off his assault, and all parties make it out of the tunnel.
Through it all, Liquid just refuses to die. That is, until the very end, when the FOXDIE that Snake had infected him with demonstrates an impeccable sense of dramatic timing. Liquid keels over as a heart attack finally claims his life. He put everything he had into besting Snake, but his best just wasn’t good enough.
Still, when it takes a special disease engineered to kill him and him specifically in order to finally bring him down, you have to admit that Liquid is pretty badass. Maybe not when Ocelot is parading around with one of his arms grafted on and pretending to be Liquid himself, but badass.